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COURTS   OF   PARIS,    NAPLES,   ETC.                247

There is a greater dearth of matter for a let-
ter than I ever experienced, for the style I live
in is more eremitical than you can imagine. Yet
the poorest hermit had a garden to cultivate, and
I have nothing of the kind.

Our weather is stormy, with an hour or two
of sunshine every day, and the golden forest is in
high picturesque beauty; but, alas! it gives the
unpleasant feeling of desolation and winter, I
make long stretches across it every day, after
working at my desk two or three hours. After
dinner I go and sit sometimes with Lady Rodney
and her two daughters ; but in general I remain
by my fireside and read " Voltaire's Correspond-
ence," which is very entertaining, though I should
like it better if there were less of Voltaire
in it.

Mesdames d'Anglures and Talaru are coming
to see me, but cannot move till the decree is
fixed concerning the ex-nobles. The consternation
was general while the motion remained unaltered;
but the movers have withdrawn it, and proposed
another, by which the ex-nobles will stand in the
predicament of foreigners.

I have a letter from Sir S. Smith, who thought
I was gone, and wrote to me at the Admiralty,
from whence it has been forwarded to me. In it